HONOLULU (KHON2) — Affording a single family home on Oahu is getting tougher according to a local real estate company, but efforts are underway at the Legislature to help make sure local families aren’t priced out.
“What we saw at the end of the fourth quarter is that there was a slight dip in affordability and in single family housing affordability index dropped from 73 to 71,” said Scott Bradley, President and Owner of Berkshire Hathway Homeservices Hawaii Realty.
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Affordability was based off a median household income of $102,000 with median single family homes priced at $1,050,000. Low interests rates mean a competitive market will continue this year. According to Locations, homes are selling fast in Kapolei, Ewa Beach and the Windward side of Oahu.
“I’m seeing houses that actually have seen contracts written on them within a day, as soon as they come in,” said John Connelley, Locations Principal Broker.
Record breaking home prices and a fast pace market have lawmakers calling this a housing crisis.
“Three of the four counties now have median house prices over $1 million,” said Sen. Stanley Chang, (D) Hawaii Kai, Aina Haina, Diamond Head. “I saw a report recently that showed the median house price on Kauai at $1.725 million. If there’s anyone in Hawaii who thinks that these are reasonable prices that local families can afford, I haven’t yet met them.”
Sen. Stanley Chang says the state is only able to build about 2,000 homes per year. He’s pushing to utilize state owned lands to build more homes for locals, calling them Aloha Homes.
“Basically, every local family would have access to a home that would cost as low as $400,000 each. It would kind of be like public school for housing, a low cost option that is available to all regardless of their circumstances,” Sen. Chang said.
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Chang is also pushing to create a state department of housing to better advocate affordable housing for local families.
“We need to build more. That’s the bottom line. We need to build more to take care of our own,” said Sen. Chang.